America’s Schools: 1950s vs. Today [Infographic]

Americas Schools 1950s vs Today

From teachers’ salaries to days in school to technology in the classroom, education has changed dramatically in the United States over the past 60 years.

Given today’s classroom technology includes laptops and iPads, it’s hard to believe the innovative classroom technology in the 1950s included slide rulers, headphones, and reading accelerators.

This infographic from Column Five Media, in partnership with Take Part, takes a closer look at the differences over the past sixty years.

Check out the key takeaways for the infographic.

America's Schools 1950s vs today

Source: Column Five Media

Key Takeaways

  • Average teacher salary in 1950-51 was $4,000; today’s starting teacher salary is $39,000
  • In 1950, 36 percent of white Americans and 13 percent of black Americans over 25 years old had a high school diploma or higher. In 2010, 92 percent of white Americans and almost 85 percent of black Americans earned a high school diploma or higher.
  • Students attended school an average 155 days in 1950-51, while today’s students attend an average of 180 days
  • $215 was spent per student in 1951 while an average $10,615 was spent per student in 2010
  • The best selling books in the 1950s were Charlotte’s Web and The Catcher in the Rye while today’s best selling books are The Hunger Games Series and The Invention of Hugo Cabret
  • Each year 1.3 million students drop out of school
  • Currently, U.S. students are ranked 14th in literacy and 25th in math

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